Vladimir Putin has ordered Russian military forces to invade Ukraine. The individual impact of this and subsequent actions by the EU, NATO, and others varies widely. Imagine a continuum. On one end are those affected directly for whom this may even be a life or death situation. On that end of the continuum may be U.S. companies, such as in the tech sector, with Ukrainian operations that have a large number of employees there. For them it has been decision time. Do we stay or do we go?
Then there may be colleagues of Ukrainian descent, which you may or may not know, who struggle with the realities of what is happening in their ancestral homeland, and possibly to relatives and friends in harm’s way. Intrusive thoughts, perhaps grief, and concerns may affect the ability to focus, to work normally. Over a million U.S. citizens are of Ukrainian descent.
Images and media coverage of war affect many. From seeing the bodies of soldiers, and civilians, to the destruction in once peaceful neighborhoods. Troubling events may trouble the mind. Some will simply ignore the media coverage because it is too upsetting.
On the other end of the continuum, there will be people who do not care about Ukraine, out of sight, out of mind.
The war in Ukraine can impact the mental health of employees. Recognize this possibility. Acknowledge what is happening as you see appropriate. If possible, make sure employees are aware of the availability of mental health resources.
It has not been business as usual during the pandemic. It is not business as usual with a war in Europe.
Image by Danielhadmanphotography. Obtained from https://pixabay.com/photos/veterans-day-anzac-day-anzac-4653833/
© John Ballard, PhD, 2022. All rights reserved.
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